Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thursday Meditation, Little Altars and Thanksgiving

Welcome it all, whatever may come... for in the end we are each works of art being shaped by our living, both joys and struggles, along the way...
A few Thanksgiving thoughts before I'm off to the kitchen to prepare our special dinner for today... This picture is of a very small Italian ceramic from a thrift shop that holds these objects that stay on my table where I eat. I have a habit of collecting little things that end up grouped together like little sacred altars here and there, little reminders of places I've been or special times or a way of being. I'm especially fond of beach stones and shells, dropped feathers....

This one holds...
... a lucky penny on the bottom, who doesn't need that?
...a crystal skull, symbolic to me of the shortness of life, you know, carpe diem, do it now
...a stone for serenity reminds me of an African tale of the stones that hold all our stories, they have heard every one, and they still sit silently in serenity
...a few fortunes from Chinese fortune cookies tucked discreetly behind, and
...a winged heart from an Artfest retreat, reminding me of the spirited good times with like-minded souls, and a symbol for choices based from my center, and the English heraldry from my last name...

All this in this small container.... Now I'm wondering, what special little reminders do others keep? Are you a collector of little tidbits of nature?

So now, I'm off to the kitchen. And I send you the most positive thoughts and appreciation for sharing my blog journey this day of Thanksgiving here in the US. Make time for family and friends, and, of course, yourself, do take time to play and create.

Monday, November 23, 2009

A Canadian Retreat and Painting with a Red Sky

Playing with colors and a little retreat... so soothing...
Playing with Color
Here is a start on another acrylic painting, I think it needs a little bit more... I have been experimenting with lots of color. Why not have a red sky and blue rocks? Maybe it's to compensate for the northwest rainy season, our "monsoon" season which has arrived and here to stay til, perhaps April or May?

A Short Retreat
Last week we drove up to British Columbia for a couple of nights private celebration in one of our favorite places. This time of year the tourists have packed up and gone home, the sun is only occasionally seen, misty fog covers the land, the lake and mountains, and you can hear the geese flapping their wings as you walk along the lake. Stunningly beautiful, quiet and serene.
Below are some bucolic farm scenes we always see as we come and go to this favorite place. I finally managed to get a picture of the candy cane silos from the car as we drove by. And the skyscapes and mossy trees caught my eye too.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Abstractions, Seascape Painting, and a Quilted Fiber Gift

Sometimes within the chaos, churning, and turnings of our lives, messages emerge from the deep ready to be received...
"Messages from the Deep" #1, a series - copyright Delorse Lovelady
Happily, I have been painting regularly again and must have a dozen or so abstractions finished or in process since Oct. All in acrylic, mixed media, a new direction for me, as I have been doing watercolors for years. Such different properties of the paint and how it can be used... I see lots more experimenting with texture and, of course, color, and have several series in mind to pursue while I experiment with the acrylics and mixed media.... Of course, I won't abandon watercolor totally, as I always like to play with a variety of media.

Although I've done a few abstractions here or there, this too is fairly new territory for me, and exciting to explore. Abstraction fits with my view that there is much that is ambiguous in the world, not what it seems, not totally definable. And that is the subject of the painting above. Another seascape, I love to paint them, but a different quality than the watercolors of the past (look at the one in my sidebar!).... I entered two paintings this week in a local show, and am in the process of preparing six more for the annual small works and miniature show I participate in.

A Quilted Gift
A friend in one of my sewing circles learned she has cancer, and thankfully her news about recovery is very good. Another friend Sharon, thought up this quilt project and sewed together the quilt squares that we all made for her as a comfort gift. I thought it came out lovely and it was much appreciated.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Ashland Road Trip,The Tulies, Lava Beds, Photos and Sketch Paintings

Off we went on our fall odyssey, down familiar roads, and some less traveled blue highways...
Gorgeous scenery everywhere... above, a scene from the breathtaking Three Capes Scenic Route along the coast of Oregon, and next to it a Photoshoped picture of the last of the sunflowers at a nature preserve in Ashland, Or. Below is a view from our room in Ashland... the famous Ashland hills, with vibrant colors in the trees. Ashland is such a wonderful small town mecca of culture and art... the Shakespeare Festival, the Cabaret Theatre, the local art galleries called the "Railroad district", Lithia Park and more... We love the "co-op" food store and often picked up something fresh to eat there.
My sketch painting of the scene...
Tillamook and Abstractions
And here is one inspired by the Tillamook, Or area... famous cheese country, lots of pastures and cows and a pungent aroma. The most amazing thing there though, is actually the Air Museum, or we call it "the Blimp" museum since it is a HUGE hanger built in the middle a cow pasture in WWII specifically to house blimps used for surveillance back then. It is SO unexpected to see it sitting there in the field... and fun to visit again, the last time was probably ten years ago.

I was fascinated with the inside of the building and odd pieces of planes and rusted equipment, and rusted old trains outside, so took many photos which look like little abstracts. I also did this at the cheese factory which had a wonderful collection of very old trucks and equipment. I am compiling a "rust" and "decomposition" series for abstractions which I will organize and post at a later time. Since I am playing with abstract mixed media painting now, they serve as great inspiration.

The Tulies and Lava BedsFrom Ashland we took a 200 plus mile side trip one day to Tulelake National Wildlife Refuge and Lava Beds National Monument in California. We took the "quick" route over the mountains directly from Ashland, which included a stretch of hairpin curves with spectacular views, though we were glad to be done with the mountain driving.

Now I'm imagining I know where the saying about being "lost in the Tule's" comes from. Tules are actually plants that look similar to the thick sturdy stems and leaves of cattails but without the same head, they get flowers instead. The Wildlife Preserve has 39,000 acres and we did see many birds that day in the small portion we visited. We spent most of our time exploring the lava beds and learned that the area has the largest concentration of lava tubes, a couple of which we walked through... And learned the whole area is a massive volcano covering 150 miles, but not in the traditional style you think of, such as St Helens. This one is underground (like Yellowstone), and is called a shield volcano. No steaming vents here, just acres of lava, lots of tubes and cones and interesting desert. And one area of the park has many petroglyphs to examine, some of which we did.

Little Things
Sometimes it's the little things I remember the most about a trip (or a moment)....

...that perfect shell with lines of shimmery wet color and the undisturbed sand
...the delicate lacey undulating grass on a desert trail
...and the satisfaction of sharing it with someone special